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Alabama State Bar Announces Support of Judicial Campaign Oversight Committee

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Susan Andres
Alabama State Bar
Director of Communications
334/269-1515
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ASB president believes that "this committee will perform a vital and important public service in the 2006 judicial elections."

Montgomery, January 19, 2006 - Based on recommendations of the Alabama State Bar's Task Force on Judicial Campaign Oversight, a new Alabama citizens' judicial campaign oversight committee has been organized - the 2006 Alabama Judicial Campaign Oversight Committee. The Committee is an independent, non-partisan group of concerned citizens. The task force determined the need for a judicial campaign conduct committee for the 2006 judicial elections and facilitated the committee's creation. Similar judicial oversight committees were established in 1998 and 2000. Currently, 23 states have some form of judicial campaign oversight.

The Committee, comprised of retired judges, lawyers and non-lawyers, has created a campaign agreement that encourages all candidates for judicial office to conduct their campaigns in a manner consistent with the dignity and integrity of the judicial system, to maintain the dignity of a judicial officer and to achieve highest ethical standards. Co-chairs, retired Montgomery Circuit Judge William R. Gordon and Judy Belk, Mobile business owner, say that the committee intends to achieve its purpose "by asking candidates to conduct their campaigns in a manner consistent with the pledge; by serving as a non-partisan information resource to candidates and inviting dialogue with them on ethical standards; by encouraging aspirational standards; by providing a confidential forum for resolving complaints or issues of the campaign; and by offering information to the press and public about campaign conduct".

According to Alabama State Bar President Bobby Segall, "The bar has historically been involved in judicial campaign oversight with the work of two past oversight committees, whose efforts greatly improved the way those judicial campaigns were conducted. The Alabama State Bar is extremely pleased with the work of the Task Force and that the Committee's membership is in place".

(Committee membership list is attached)


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2006 Judicial Oversight Committee Members

William M. Bowen, Jr.
William R. Gordon
John L. Carroll
Walter E. McGowan
Carlos A. Williams
Laveeda Morgan Battle
Robert H. Harris
Alan C. Livingston
Kay Malone Scruggs
Stephanie DeFeese Walker
William B. “Bernie” Barker
Judy McCain Belk
Karl K. Stegall